Q and A with Cards GM John Mozeliak and Bill DeWitt III

Before the game with the Pirates on Sunday, I was treated to a Q and A session with Cards GM John Mozeliak and Bill DeWitt III in the Cards conference room along with other members of the United Cardinal Bloggers.  First, I want to give thanks to Daniel Shoptaw who writes for C70 At The Bat, and also does a great job leading the UCB.  I also want to thank Lindsey Weber, who is the Cards Public Relations Specialist.  And of course, I want to thank Mo and DeWitt III for giving us a great 45 minutes.  I also want to thank them for taking the time and providing a great experience for all of us, and allowing each of us to bring a guest.  Here’s a link to the pics gallery on the Cards website from the event.  I’m the guy sitting by my friend Jack with the red hair and his hat on his knee.

Mo took the first 30 minutes and started by giving us an update about how he felt about the Cards BP problems, certain players in the minors and things to expect with the Cardinals organization going forward.  Here are a few of the questions and answers:

One of the questions asked was more of a statement with a question mixed in about the DH.  Mo was asked if the DH was inevitable because it seems to be gaining ground on a national level.  The reply from Mo was that he doesn’t feel that it is inevitable at all.  He doesn’t see it on the horizon, and it hasn’t gained the traction among other GM’s in the NL at this point.  Mo mentioned that he’s not concerned at all about it happening anytime soon and he hopes that it doesn’t.

My question for Mo was directed at how much time he spends talking with Mike Matheny, specifically in terms of looking at the minor leagues. I asked if we could read anything into him going and watching Michael Wacha pitch in Memphis last week and the comments Matheny made about Carlos Martinez recently.  Mo responded by saying that he and Matheny get together very often, almost daily.  While impressed with Wacha and Martinez, at this point there is no hurry to rush either one, but it’s something they will revisit from time to time based on needs.  Mo emphasized the limited innings that Wacha has pitched in the minors, but did talk about how impressed the Cards were with him, as well as saying that he could see him doing what Adam Wainwright did by getting worked into the BP to start his career.  Mo is also very encouraged about Martinez and called his stuff “electric.”  Mo did seem to be fired up about the potential of both of them.

When asked about Shelby Miller and his great start, Mo literally knocked on wood (the podium) and said he has a special arm and thinks he’ll be a front of the rotation starter for years to come.

When asked about the lack of depth at shortstop and the draft, Mo said they’ll continue to draft the best player available based on their own analytics and scouts, and reminded all of us that they will jump on the opportunity to address the need long term either through the MLB draft or the international market when someone is there that makes sense.

When asked about Oscar Taveras and his comparisons to Vladimir Guerrero, Mo said that he understood the comparison, but cautioned that other than both being from the Dominican Republic and being free swingers, he thinks Taveras has better plate discipline.  Mo made sure to point out that the only players in his 18 years as a Cardinal he can compare Taveras to at this time are Albert Pujols and J.D. Drew, but made sure to point out Taveras is younger than both of them while playing in AAA.

When Mo was done, the one feeling I took away from the Q and A was that the Cardinals are not going to let a few weak links in the BP completely destroy the 2013 season.  Matheny and Mo are on the same page and not afraid or hesitant to promote within.  If the BP continues to struggle, players will be sent down and others will get a chance to prove themselves.  My next question would have been how long will they wait to get guys to get straightened out, but after seeing Seth Maness come up from AAA to replace Scrabble yesterday, I think you have your answer.  I also wanted to ask about Mitchell Boggs and why he decided to change his stance after coming off such a great year and who was behind the change, but again, time was short.

DeWitt III took the podium after Mo, and most of the questions were about the red vs. blue road hats, Ballpark Village and the future of Memphis as the Cards AAA club.  The answer to the red vs. blue hats was the Cards would wear the red hats on the road if the other team wasn’t in red, otherwise blue will be worn.  A vote was taken in the room as well, and just like in online polls, it was split.  DeWitt said the Cards plan to stay in Memphis a long time and it’s nothing to worry about.  In regards to Ballpark Village, here’s a good link to the exact words.  Daniel over at C70 will have a good post regarding the event in the next day or two as well I’m sure.

Thanks for reading….J.D.

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4 Responses to Q and A with Cards GM John Mozeliak and Bill DeWitt III

  1. WainwrightandMiller says:

    You should have asked them if they could just trade everyone in the bullpen except Mujica and start over. Seriously though, it looks like it was a great time and I’m sure you had a blast. Good times J.D.

  2. Jim G says:

    That’s awesome JD!

    Maybe you can take me next year?

  3. jen77 says:

    Very cool. I would have loved to been in that room! Good news is our young players are no longer Tony’s trade chips. Mike and Moz being on the same page is important, and I’m glad they take in interest in what’s going on in the minors other than looking to dump them for the Estaban Yan’s and Pedro Feliz’s of the world.

  4. bstanley says:

    How often do you guys get to do this? Cards are a classy organization, I’ll say that much.

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